BIRTHDAY OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

Did you know Friday, Sept 8, was Mary’s birthday?  Pope Benedict XVI said: “Her soul was the space from which God was able to gain access into humanity.” “Today God welcomes on earth the holy throne which he had prepared for himself. He who established the heavens in wisdom has fashioned a living heaven.” (Byzantine liturgy).

The Jews kept records of births, we know Mary was born on Sept. 8. The Catholic Church celebrates her birthday.   Isaiah 11:1-3-A shoot shall sprout from the stump of Jesse, and from his roots a bud shall blossom. The spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him: a spirit of wisdom and of understanding. A spirit of counsel and of strength, a spirit of knowledge and of fear of the Lord, and his delight shall be the fear of the Lord.  Joseph was from the line of Jesse who was the father of David the king.

THE BIRTH OF IMMACULATE HUMILITY (MEDITATION OF THE DAY)

The devil really likes…pride…because it is the principle and source of all sin. On the other hand, it displeases God just as much as it pleases the devil. God is displeased by pride, and pleased by humility. God was so pleased with Mary’s humility that his goodness compelled him to give her the WORD, his Only Begotten Son–and she was the wonderful Mother who gave (that Word) to us. You know well that God’s Son did not take flesh within Mary until she had clearly expressed both her will and her humility by saying. Ecce ancilla Domini. Let it be done to me according to your Word. But as soon as she had said this, she conceived within her the dear spotless Lamb. By this, gentle First Truth was showing us how excellent this little virtue is, and how much those receive who in humility give their will as an offering to their Creator…………………….(Saint Catherine of Siena)

Prayer: Oh God, you gave life to the world through the Resurrection of Jesus Christ, Son of the Blessed Virgin for whose birth we give thanks this day. Grant us, we beseech you, the grace to honor with our lives the Savior whom she bore, Christ our Lord. Amen

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THE FEAST OF THE ANNUNCIATION

I meant to write this Sat. March 25, since that was the Feast of the Annunciation. This is the day we celebrate:  Luke 1:26-38

The Angel Gabriel was sent from God to a town of Galilee called Nazareth, to a virgin betrothed to a man named Joseph, of the house of David, and the virgin’s name was Mary. And coming to her, he said, “Hail, full of grace! The Lord is with you.” But she was greatly troubled at what was said and pondered what sort of greeting this might be. Then the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. Behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall name him Jesus. He will be great and will be called Son of the Most High, and the Lord God will give him the throne of David his father, and he will rule over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.” But Mary said to the angel, “How can this be, since I have no relations with a man?” And the angel said to her in reply, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. Therefore the child to be born will be called holy, the Son of God. And behold, Elizabeth, your relative, has also conceived a son in her old age, and this is the sixth month for her who was called barren; for nothing will be impossible for God.: Mary said, “Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord. May it be done to me according to your word.” Then the angel departed from her.

CANTICLE OF MARY:  And Mary told Elizabeth  (Luke 1:46-55)

MY SOUL proclaims the greatness of the Lord, my spirit rejoices in God my Savior for he has looked with favor on his lowly servant. From this day all generations will call me blessed: the Almighty has done great things for me, and holy is his Name. He has mercy on those who fear him in every generation. He has shown the strength of his arm, he has scattered the proud in their conceit. He has cast down the might from their thrones, and has lifted up the lowly. He has filled the hungry with good things, and the rich he has sent away empty. He has come to the help of his servant Israel for he has remembered his promise of mercy, the promise he made to our fathers, to Abraham and his children for ever.

GLORY TO THE FATHER, AND TO THE SON, and to the HOLY SPIRIT, as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen


The Glory Be to the Father is a prayer Catholics say often.  If only we would be as willing to do what God asks without question.   Here is a prayer for that:

Jesus, You became flesh in the womb of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Pray for me, that I may deny myself and choose God’s will for my life, for I know and believe that He is a good Father and will lead me to salvation. Amen

 

CONVERSION STORY NO.???????????????

We have talked before about how our Conversion Stories never really end. Every once in a while something new happens that makes us want to re-commit ourselves to Jesus. This is one of those stories.

About 7 years or so ago, I started having a very fast heart beat, which then caused other problems, which resulted in several operations and a loss of energy. Of course, at the same time, I was getting older, which also results in a loss of that youthful energy.  Anyway, a few years before that after I retired from  working, I started talking to Jesus and asked Him what he wanted me to do next. After several years of prayer, and “What do you want me to do”? and several bible classes, a thought hit me during the night.  It seems, I always get my communications from Jesus at night.

The people that had been leading our bible and religious study classes had either moved or were worn out and had stopped coming up with ideas. It seems that is what Jesus wanted me to do. I had not led classes and come up with ideas for years, since before  I was married 25 years ago, so this took some praying and courage.  I was taking bible study classes in another church in our Cluster, so had someone to talk about it with and bounce things off from. Then the Presence Catholic Radio came on the air in our Area.

The Presence. FM is another miracle.  There are not that many Catholics in Maine. The Presence runs totally on donations. It started 6 years ago in Southern Maine and moved north, area by area until it covers all of Maine.   It is very informative, and everyone that listens, Catholics and non-Catholics alike, learn a lot.  I just happened to be listening one morning on the way to exercise class and heard the Rosary and then a prayer in song called: THE CHAPLET OF DIVINE MERCY.  This is a beautiful prayer, and the first time I heard it, it brought tears to my eyes.

First though, one thing I learned from one of the Presence talk shows, was that the Rosary, and the Mysteries that go with it, form  a STRING OF THE LIFE OF JESUS. Each Mystery that we say between the ten Hail Marys and the Our Fathers is a point in Jesus life and by the end of each week, day by day, we cover the Life of Jesus. It is so beautiful when you realize this.

Anyway, I thought more people should hear and pray the Chaplet. I did some research, spoke to other people at our church and spoke to our Parish Priest. The Sunday after Easter is called DIVINE MERCY SUNDAY, and the Pope had asked all Catholics and other Christians to pray the Chaplet on that Sunday afternoon at 3 PM for peace in our world. Three PM is the hour that Christ died and it is a special time for prayer.  It worked, the Priest agreed, and I and many others in our church worked to make Divine Mercy Sunday afternoon a very special time of prayer.  It worked so well that Father decided we should move this prayer service to other Churches in our Cluster, and that is what we have done.  This year it will be in another of our churches and we can all still pray together.

Why do I call this one of my Conversion Stories? Because, this Chaplet brought more prayer and joy back into my life. It is something I can share and other friends can share with me.  There are many benefits to saying the Chaplet and people all over the world say this Chaplet at 3PM each day, especially on Fridays.  So even if I say it at 5PM, someone somewhere is saying this prayer and we are praying for peace, for souls in Purgatory and other special requests for our family, friends and ourselves. Jesus listens.

If you type in “Chaplet of Divine Mercy” on Google or another search engine, you will see a picture of Jesus with the words, “JESUS I TRUST IN YOU.”

 

 

MARY, MOTHER FOR LIFE

O Mary, Mother of the Life Within, all life we entrust to You: the life of every expectant mother and the child within her womb, the life of every human body, the life of every human soul, the life of every newborn child and the life of all grown olf. You held the Lord to Your own Heart and drew Him so close in. So draw us now in all our needs, O Mother of the Life Within.

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PRAYER TO OUR LADY OF HOPE

O Blessed virgin Mary, mother of grace, hope of the world. Hear us, your children, who cry to you.

Oh Mother of Mercy, have pity on me in my distress. You are all-powerful with your divine Son. He can refuse no request of your immaculate heart. Show yourself at true mother to me by being my advocate before His throne.

Above all I pray, O dearest mother, that through your most powerful intercession my heart may be filled with holy hope, so that in life’s darkest hour I may never fail to trust in God my Savior, but by walking in the way of His commandments I may be united with Him, and with you in the eternal joys of heaven.

Mary, our hope, have pity on us. Hope of the hopeless, pray for us.   (from the Novena to Our Lady of Hope.)

GOD BLESS YOU ALL, PRAY FOR OUR PREGNANT MOTHERS AND THEIR UNBORN CHILDREN, THAT THEY MAY IGNORE THE WORLD, SEEK HELP, AND BRING GOD’S BEAUTIFUL CHILDREN INTO THE WORLD.